Commentary and Opinions: The Utilization of Social Media by Medical Residency Programs During COVID-19 Pandemic and Beyond

Leilynaz Malekafzali, Chaocheng Liu


As a result of COVID-19 pandemic, medical training has been greatly impacted globally. In Canada, out-of-province visiting clinical electives were cancelled. In addition, the Canadian Resident Matching Service (CaRMS) interviews were transitioned to being virtual since 2020. As residency programs are exploring new ways to overcome the challenges of elective cancellation, there has been a surge of residency program social media accounts on Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook. Social media serves as a platform for residency programs to promote themselves in addition to posting interactive educational materials. Moreover, social media residency accounts provide a platform for medical students to learn about the programs and network virtually with fellow applicants, residents, program directors, and faculty members. Overall, social media is becoming a popular and valuable tool for residency programs to connect with the applicants during COVID-19 pandemic and beyond. Among the different social media platforms, Instagram seems to be more appealing to both residency programs and the graduating medical students. We report our observations regarding selected Canadian residency program Instagram accounts. To maximize the success of using social media, it is important for the residency programs to consider the attitudes of applicants towards the residency social media accounts. Future studies are needed to assess the effectiveness of the Canadian residency program social media accounts for the final year students applying for these programs.

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Journal of Education and Training Studies  ISSN 2324-805X (Print)   ISSN 2324-8068 (Online)

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